LOS ANGELES - A 32-year-old Los Angeles EMT jumped into service after a passenger onboard a United Airlines flight suffered cardiac arrest mid-flight on Monday, December 14. TMZ obtained exclusive video of the lifesaving efforts during that flight from Orlando to LAX, which was diverted to New Orleans.
The man later died and the coroner in Louisiana is now confirming the 69-year-old man died of COVID-19.
EMT Tony Aldapa is that hero. Earlier this week via Skype, he spoke to FOX 11 while quarantining at home. He was quick to deflect praise. Instead, he lauded the crew members who initiated CPR. "In my eyes, they are definitely heroes. I was just helping out."
Reports began to circulate the passenger’s wife told people her husband had been exhibiting COVID- like symptoms prior to the flight. People were outraged the man had been allowed to board the plane. But Aldapa said if he had prior knowledge, it wouldn’t have altered his actions or his feelings about helping out.
Aldapa said initially he had not been feeling well after the flight. The symptoms included body aches and fatigue and was quarantining while speaking with FOX 11.
On Wednesday, Aldapa received his third COVID-19 test result and said he is free from the virus. He had tested negative the first two times.
After his heroic efforts, Aldapa has been receiving shoutouts from family and strangers alike. The phrase that comes to my mind in describing Aldapa, "He has the heart to serve."